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Salisbury Knights Non-Defensive Mustering


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I'm getting ready to run GPC 496, and one of the PKs is the marshal. He'll need to decide how to respond to the events of the year, and subsequent years, which means figuring out how many knights he can spare when riding out to battle outside Salisbury. 

I'd like to present him a few options, and I'd like to get people's opinions on the breakdown below. This is based on the 75-knight breakdown in the rulebook.

Ride out recklessly from Sarum with those knights immediately available: Half Sarum garrison (4) + Knights with "other business" but in Sarum (7) + retinue for marshal (4)* + retinue for constable (2)* + PKs (5) = 22 knights

Send out messengers and wait two days: Half Sarum garrison (4) + Knights with "other business" but in Sarum (7) + retinue for marshal (4)* + retinue for constable (2)* + PKs (5) + vassal knights from near manors (3) + one patrol (5) = 30 knights

Send out messengers and wait four days: Half Sarum garrison (4) + Knights with "other business" but in Sarum (7) + retinue for marshal (4)* + retinue for constable (2)* + PKs (5) + vassal knights from all manors (5) + patrols (10) = 37 knights

Send out messengers, leave halved garrison at fortresses, and wait four days: Half Sarum garrison (4) + Knights with "other business" but in Sarum (7) + retinue for marshal (4)* + retinue for constable (2)* + PKs (5) + vassal knights from all manors (5) + patrols (10) + half of other fortress garrisons (8) = 45 knights

* I'm guessing on these figures, based on the 10 for "staff".

What do you think about this breakdown? Would you use something else?

 

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8 hours ago, SaxBasilisk said:

What do you think about this breakdown? Would you use something else?

All in all, looks pretty reasonable. Some comments:

Firstly, why did you ignore the count's personal retinue of 12 knights who live in Sarum? Surely the Marshal would have them to command, too.

Secondly, depending how the PKs have consolidated Salisbury county, they might have access to more knights than 75.

Thirdly, depending on what kind of invasion/raiding you are expecting when the army is away, that should inform how much men you wish to leave behind. Footsoldiers are fine defending castles, but they are less able to react quickly and chase down raiders. Stripping both patrols away might be a bad idea.

Fourthly, there would be more vassal knights than 10, but I see you assume that 5 of them are unassigned PKs, and others would be tied up in garrisons & included in patrols. So I don't really have an issue with this one, just wanted to add this comment. 🙂

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3 hours ago, Morien said:

Firstly, why did you ignore the count's personal retinue of 12 knights who live in Sarum? Surely the Marshal would have them to command, too.

I interpret those knights as a perq of the position. Plus, giving the marshal the ability to order away a noble's personal bodyguards seems problematic, especially in Anarchy.

3 hours ago, Morien said:

Secondly, depending how the PKs have consolidated Salisbury county, they might have access to more knights than 75.

Thirdly, depending on what kind of invasion/raiding you are expecting when the army is away, that should inform how much men you wish to leave behind. Footsoldiers are fine defending castles, but they are less able to react quickly and chase down raiders. Stripping both patrols away might be a bad idea.

Fourthly, there would be more vassal knights than 10, but I see you assume that 5 of them are unassigned PKs, and others would be tied up in garrisons & included in patrols. So I don't really have an issue with this one, just wanted to add this comment. 🙂

Thank you! With that in mind, I'll revise as follows:

Ride out recklessly from Sarum with those knights immediately available: Half Sarum garrison (4) + Knights with "other business" but in Sarum (7) + retinue for marshal (4)* + retinue for constable (2)* + PKs (5) = 22 knights

Send out messengers and wait two days: Half Sarum garrison (4) + Knights with "other business" but in Sarum (7) + retinue for marshal (4)* + retinue for constable (2)* + PKs (5) + vassal knights from near manors (3) + patrol (5) = 30 knights

Send out messengers and wait four days: Half Sarum garrison (4) + Knights with "other business" but in Sarum (7) + retinue for marshal (4)* + retinue for constable (2)* + PKs (5) + vassal knights from all manors (5) + patrol (5) = 32 knights

Send out messengers, empty fortress garrisons, and wait four days: Sarum garrison (8) + Knights with "other business" but in Sarum (7) + retinue for marshal (4)* + retinue for constable (2)* + PKs (5) + vassal knights from all manors (5) + patrol (5) + half of other fortress garrisons (17) = 53 knights

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1 hour ago, SaxBasilisk said:

I interpret those knights as a perq of the position. Plus, giving the marshal the ability to order away a noble's personal bodyguards seems problematic, especially in Anarchy.

Marshal doesn't get to order anything if there is a Count/Regent who objects to his plans. All of the Marshal's authority comes from the Count, and orders are delivered in the name of the Count/Regent, not in the Marshal's own personal authority. Certainly plans like sending a portion of Salisbury's army out of the county (or even reshuffle the garrisons) is a big enough decision that you have to have the Count's/Regent's OK to do this. Thus, if the Countess is the Regent, I can see her sending some of her bodyguards away to fight, since if there would be a Count, he would be in the fight with ALL of his bodyguards.

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By "riding out to battle outside Salisbury", do you mean outside the county (as opposed to Sarum)? Because I'd use something like your numbers for responding to threats inside the county. Going further afield would involve more planning (at least the four days for messages) but could take up to as many knights as the count/regent is willing to send.

Edited by Uqbarian
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9 hours ago, Morien said:

Marshal doesn't get to order anything if there is a Count/Regent who objects to his plans. All of the Marshal's authority comes from the Count, and orders are delivered in the name of the Count/Regent, not in the Marshal's own personal authority. Certainly plans like sending a portion of Salisbury's army out of the county (or even reshuffle the garrisons) is a big enough decision that you have to have the Count's/Regent's OK to do this. Thus, if the Countess is the Regent, I can see her sending some of her bodyguards away to fight, since if there would be a Count, he would be in the fight with ALL of his bodyguards.

I see where you're coming from. I do think I'm making the right call for the Countess in 496 in my GPC - she's still nervous about the events of the previous year. (Frankly, I didn't even know whether the group would let her take power until my most likely candidate leapt to her defense in the debate.) Still, I think she'll feel more comfortable about sending out some of her retinue in the future, once she becomes more secure in her position. 

And I'm glad I asked about the numbers here - because my PK marshal certainly did.

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1 hour ago, Uqbarian said:

By "riding out to battle outside Salisbury", do you mean outside the county (as opposed to Sarum)? Because I'd use something like your numbers for responding to threats inside the county. Going further afield would involve more planning (at least the four days for messages) but could take up to as many knights as the count/regent is willing to send.

It's for outside the county itself, not outside Sarum. I think the fourth option would be a good starting point for determining internal defense, but I'm sure one's relations with neighbors (especially Silchester and Wessex) would also factor in.

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1 hour ago, SaxBasilisk said:

It's for outside the county itself, not outside Sarum. I think the fourth option would be a good starting point for determining internal defense, but I'm sure one's relations with neighbors (especially Silchester and Wessex) would also factor in.

Righto. And yeah, relations with neighbouring lords would be important.

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